2020 World Press Freedom Index: ‘Georgian media pluralist, but still very polarised’

Georgia ranked 61st in the survey of last year. Photo: Nino Alavidze/Agenda.ge.

Agenda.ge, 21 Apr 2020 - 13:19, Tbilisi,Georgia

The 2020 World Press Freedom Index by Reporters Without Borders says that ‘Georgia’s media are pluralist but still very polarized,’ adding that the reforms of recent years have brought improvements in media ownership transparency and satellite TV pluralism,’ but owners still often call the shots on editorial content.’ 

Georgia has ranked 60th among 180 foreign countries in the survey which is the best result the country ever had. 

The survey reviewed the situation of Rustavi 2 TV channel and Adjara TV.

In compliance with a European Court of Human Rights ruling, Rustavi 2, the main national opposition TV channel, was restored to a previous owner, resulting in its adoption of a pro-government editorial policy and in the resignation of most of its journalists. Two new pro-opposition TV channels emerged as a consequence of the conflict. Adjara TV, a regional public television channel, has meanwhile suffered from repeated pressure to support a particular party. 

Reports Without Borders says that the survey shows that the coming decade will be “decisive for the future of journalism, with the Covid-19 pandemic highlighting and amplifying the many crises that threaten the right to freely reported, independent, diverse and reliable information”.